Sunday, 10 May 2009

In May A Knitter's Thoughts Turn to....


I don't get it either. The sun is shining and temperatures are up -- but scarves it is.

The first is this super dooper colourful scarf knit with Noro Sock Yarn. The pattern, the imaginatively titled Drop Stitch Scarf, is in the summer 2009 Vogue Kniting (aka Designer Knitting) magazine.

It's a pattern I expect I wouldn't have noticed if it hadn't been pointed out to me by the very friendly shop assistant at iKnit when I bought the magazine. She suggested it would look fab knit in a yarn with long stripes of colour -- and I agreed.

It was a straightforward project to knit - although I think there were a few errors in the pattern. I just did what I thought made sense and ignored what I decided didn't. There isn't an errata posted yet - so if you decide to make it and want to know what changes I made just let me know.

The horiontal stripes of dropped stitches are made by wrapping the yarn round the needle 3 times for each stitch, and then in the next row knitting into one of the wraps and dropping the other two.

The long vertical strips of dropped stitches are made by dropping a stitch off the needle during the cast off. Of course all knitters know that if you drop a stitch accidentally it will unravel at an alarming speed - particularly if the knitting is complicated. I can confirm though that if you drop a stitch on purpose it will unravel only through brute force. It took over an hour to drop the 6 stitches from the cast off edge back to the cast on!

I used almost all of the skein of yarn - these few yards are my leftovers.

The finished scarf is 15 inches by 72 inches.

More scarf action in the next post!

Now that the lovely weather appears to be settling in I've returned to work. Well, part time work so I can't complain too much! I'm doing some consultancy in the City which I'm actually enjoying.

I've set myself up a little company and I'm currently in the throes of sorting out logos and business cards, registering with Revenue and Customs, and just figuring out what it means to be a limited company in the UK!

I think I'd like to continue as a consultant - it suits my skill set and personality EXCEPT I'm such a rubbish networker/sales person. I'm going to have to work on that.....

Unrelated to knitting or my attempts at a career change I would like to draw the attention of any readers in London (or surrounding area) to the first ever Iron Cupcake:London Competition! Hosted by the Caked Crusader (who else?) which is due to be held June 1st in central London.

You can attend as a competitor or just to gobble up the lovely cupcakes - either way I expect it's going to be a fab evening!!!

You can find more details on the Caked Crusader's blog or at the Iron Cupcake:London website.

Monday, 4 May 2009

Joy in the Morning

I've called this post Joy in the Morning for a few reasons.

First, it is indeed morning as I compose this blog entry. (And heh -- given my recent posting activity - just posting should be a cause for joy!)

Second, it is a Bank Holiday here in London and it is NOT raining.

Finally, and most importantly (at least as far as this blog is concerned) I present Joy, a summer cardigan from Kim Hargreaves Nectar collection.

This cardigan was the latest project in my 'working through the stash' drive. I bought the yarn (Rowan Luxury Cotton DK - now discontinued) last summer at the Liberty sale and decided it was time to get it worked up into....something.

The usual aimless flicking through books and magazines followed until I stumbled across this pattern. I decided to make it for my younger sister (surprise!)(I'll find out now if she actually reads the blog or just looks at the pictures) which is of course always a bit of a knitting risk. But I figured I could probably find another pair of shoulders if she decides it isn't quite right for her.

I love Kim Hargreaves style details and the attention she gives to things like lining up the pattern in the sleeves with the body of the cardigan and the scalloped cast on edges.

The pattern is clear although the text for the 'Eyelet Ridge Pattern' could put beginning knitters off - it shouldn't. I think a chart would have been a lot clearer but for some reason they don't appear a lot in Hargreaves' books.

The pattern calls for Rowan Denim yarn - which shrinks (lengthwise) when washed so you may have to do some adjusting to the pattern if you are using something else. Miraculously (more joy!) I just knit and managed to get the right row and stitch gauge without any changes. (I still don't quite believe it myself.)

PS - Apart from being a convenient blog post title Joy in the Morning is a very funny book by PG Wodehouse. If you haven't read any of Wodehouse's Jeeves and Wooster stories do try one. I can't really pick one out over the others as to be honest the plots are all pretty similar -- but that is in no way a criticism. I've read them all more than once and expect to read them all again.

And if you are a fan of Hugh Laurie in House - but haven't experienced the delights of the British series of Jeeves and Wooster from the 90's check out this clip for a bit of House like you've never seen him before!

- In the interest in Truth in Blogging I should confess it is now well past noon (got a bit distracted) and it is now raining. But there's no way I'm changing that title now.